Pedestrian deaths and injuries have been on the decline, except in one metropolitan area—Atlanta. That’s right, our city is seriously dangerous for walkers, joggers and hikers. The Atlanta Metropolitan area has the highest fatality rates in the nation for males, Hispanics and those in the 15-34 and 35-54 age groups. “Atlanta is incredibly auto-focused with poor public transportation and very poor pedestrian walkways,’’ says John Foy, founder of John Foy & Associates.
If you, or a loved one, have been injured as a pedestrian by a vehicle, you’re not alone. We’re one of Atlanta’s largest personal injury law firms. We’ve spent the last 20 years practicing only one aspect of the law—compensating those who have been injured by someone else’s negligence. Call our firm at 404-400-4000 for a free consultation.
What should I do if a car has injured a loved one or me, as pedestrians?
The key in any kind of accident is to gather as much information as possible. Take down the name of any witnesses. Hopefully the vehicle that hit you has stopped. Get the driver’s license number, insurance information and license plate number. If possible, take a photo of the license plate. Make a record of your environment—Was there a walkway? Was there a light? Call the police and make a formal report. That police report will be an important record of events in any future legal proceedings. If you need medical care, call an ambulance.
And, call a personal injury attorney for representation before you make a recorded call with any insurance company, including your own. The insurance companies will be in a rush to make a quick, inexpensive settlement even before all of your injuries are apparent. Once you sign a settlement you never have another chance to recover another penny from that accident.
How are pedestrian accidents different from other accidents?
When a pedestrian is hit by a motor vehicle or bicycle, the pedestrian is almost always injured. An accident can be swift, unexpected and deadly. It seems counterintuitive, but the Dept. of Transportation found that 88 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred in normal weather, not fog, rain or snow. The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center reported that almost three out of four pedestrian fatalities occur in urban areas. More than a quarter (26 percent) of all pedestrian fatalities occurred between 6 and 8:59 p.m.
What am I entitled to in a pedestrian accident?
As in any personal injury you are entitled to compensation for reasonable medical costs, wages or income lost because of the accident, and pain and suffering. If a driver is criminally negligent or drunk, you may be eligible for punitive damages meant to punish the wrongdoer. If you have lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, you may be eligible for wrongful death compensation. Our attorneys at John Foy & Associates can give you more information at 404-400-4000.
Who is at fault in a pedestrian accident? Is the driver always at fault?
Pedestrian accidents can be quite complicated. “The driver is not always at fault,” says John Foy, our founder. A case requires much investigation: Was the pedestrian in a walkway? Did he or she have a “safe-to-walk” signal? Did the pedestrian dart through traffic? In a city like Atlanta, with few formal sidewalks or walkways, you’ll need a personal injury attorney who can help prove liability and fault.
What are some of the common causes of pedestrian accidents?
Unmarked crosswalks, left-hand turns, use of electronics by the walker and driver, quiet cars and busy streets all add up to causes of pedestrian accidents.
Children and the elderly are often the victims. According to the CDC, people 65 and older account for 18% of all pedestrian deaths, and one out of five children between the ages of 5 and 9 who were killed in traffic accidents were pedestrians.
Sadly, one of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents is drinking, either by the walker or driver. Government reports estimate that 48% of pedestrian deaths involve alcohol, either with the driver or pedestrian.
If I am injured by a bicycle, do I still have a case?
If a bicyclist caused an injury and you were not at fault, you have the right to pursue a case. Bicyclists are supposed to follow the rules of the road, but often they do not. Our law firm will work with you to sort out the details.
Is there a time limit for me to sue after a pedestrian accident?
Most personal injury cases have a deadline of two years from an accident to file a lawsuit, but there are some shorter exceptions. It’s important to call a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. We can help you get proper medical care and services you need to recover while we pursue your case.
How can a pedestrian accident attorney help me?
If you or someone you love has been injured as a pedestrian, you are probably in a lot of pain, you may have already missed work or school. Perhaps your child or elderly parent has been killed. Don’t try to figure this out on your own. At John Foy & Associates, we’ve had more than 20 years experience fighting for those who have been injured by another. We’re very familiar with Atlanta’s pedestrian cases. We help our clients get the proper medical care from top-rate providers who document our client’s injuries.
You’re hurt and you need help. Let us help you. Our 24-hour free hotline is available at 404-400-4000. Someone who can help you will answer the phone.